Carrie Sanders (Massage Therapist, Reiki Master, and 500Hr RYT) is one of the few Massage Therapists at The Wellness Center who offers both Reiki Energy Work and CranioSacral Therapy. We sat down with her to discuss the benefits of these two modalities, how they differ, and when the best time is for each. We are also thrilled to share that this month marks Carrie’s 8th year with us at The Wellness Center!
What Is Reiki & How Does it Work?
Reiki is the ancient Japanese healing art of removing energetic blocks within the body to re-establish balance and harmony. “Right now, there is an apparent shift in human consciousness,“ Carries says, “and while there are many positive aspects of this shift, I’m also seeing a lot of anxiety and anxiousness as a result. Reiki can help balance energy so that you don’t have such a constant feeling of uneasiness.” Folks who are grieving, feeling depleted, or are experiencing emotional turmoil can all benefit from Reiki as well.
Reiki, which translates to Universal Life Energy, is a subtle modality that is practiced with either light pressure touch or hands hovering above the recipient. Carrie studied the Usui Shiki Ryoho Lineage of Reiki, which means that she practices with hands-on, light pressure touch. She explains, “there are thousands of energy centers within the body. When I practice Reiki Energy Work, I feel for how the overall energy flow is being impacted by small blockages in these centers. Then, I utilize my own life force to open and work with the life force energy of the client in order to break through blockages and areas where the energy is restricted in flow.” Currently, Carrie is developing a technique in which she uses a gliding motion with her hands to facilitate more flow and release, which she finds to be beneficial for her clients.
What is CranioSacral Therapy & How Does it Work?
While Reiki deals primarily with the energetic body, Craniosacral Therapy (CST) addresses blockages in the physical body. CST is a gentle practice that focuses on releasing restrictions to the flow of cerebrospinal fluid in order to balance the body’s nervous system. Carrie, who studied the Upledger Method, explains, “when we remove blockages we enhance the flow of fluids, bathing the brain and the channel in essential nutrients. The brain is crucial to our body’s own healing mechanisms; when we bathe it in what it needs to function at its optimal level, the body will respond in kind. In this way, we can access the body’s ability to heal itself.” Folks with migraines, anxiety, depression, and physical or emotional trauma may all find relief from CST.
The craniosacral system is made up of the membranes and fluid that surround, protect and nourish the brain and spinal cord. When we experience stresses that our bodies must compensate for, tissues in the body often tighten, which in turn distorts the craniosacral system and the flow of cerebrospinal fluid. Restrictions in this flow can disrupt the nervous system and essentially every system in our body. In a CST session, Carrie will gently feel various locations of the body to test for the ease of motion and rhythm of the cerebrospinal fluid pulsing around the brain and spinal cord. She will then utilize soft-touch techniques to facilitate the release of restrictions and enhance the body’s ability to self-correct.
When Should I NOT Receive Reiki or CST?
While there are no known contraindications for Reiki energy work, Carrie shared with us that clients need to be “clear of mind,” and should not be under the influence of any substances during these sessions. Reiki does not interfere with any western medical practices. Craniosacral Therapy should not be performed on anyone who recently experienced a concussion or head injury. Additionally, CST is not recommended for folks who experience acute aneurysm, cerebral hemorrhage or other preexisting severe bleeding disorders where a variation and/or slight increase in intracranial pressure would cause instability.
What Kind of Appointment Should I Schedule?
If you are ready to try Reiki or CST, there are a few different ways of scheduling the appointment. First, you’ll want to be sure that you’re booking with a practitioner who offers Reiki or CST. If you are booking online, filter your appointment searches by looking for these modalities. If you are calling us to schedule, you may simply ask our front desk staff to pair you with someone who offers your preferred treatment. How long of an appointment should you book? Carrie recommends a 90 Minute Massage appointment. She divides the time into 60 minutes of massage and 30 minutes or Reiki or CST. Her personal preference is to not perform Reiki and CST in the same session as she feels it diminishes the effectiveness of the individual treatments. If you prefer to eliminate the massage, you may schedule 30-60 minutes of Reiki or CST as a focused treatment. Please feel free to call us with any questions or concerns.
All For the Good
Whatever your preferred method of treatment is, Carrie reminds us that Reiki, CST, Therapeutic Massage, and all of the services we offer here at The Wellness Center are,”all for the good of uplifting your energy, your body, and your mind.” We are honored to be a part of your Wellness practice.